Celebrate the past in Los Angeles this week, first with an improv show that highlights music videos from back in MTV’s heyday and then with a party for a bridge that just can’t fail. Or, catch modern artists and performers at the Getty’s Friday Flights free, multimedia art show. Looking to turn up the heat? Escape to the desert.
AFAR Local is our weekly insider guide to the best of what’s happening in cities around the U.S.
July 14 | Improv
Yo MTV Improv
The days of turning on MTV and watching music videos are over—which is a darn shame, because there are some real gems from the I Want My MTV era. Yo MTV Improv capitalizes on this by gathering comedians together to perform sketches on the fly based on selected music videos. The night is hosted by E=MC Hammer members Celeste Busa, BJ Emery, Darius Hamilton-Smith, Jan Lefrancois-Gijzen, and Kellan Meador. They’ll dig up old hits that you loved and ones you didn’t remember you knew and give them a modern twist.
11 p.m.–12:15 a.m. | The Clubhouse, 1607 N. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles | Free | website
July 15 | Music
Friday Flights at the Getty
The Getty is the perfect place to relish L.A.’s long summer nights with live music and a chill West Coast vibe high up in the hills. Friday Flights at the Getty showcases local performers and artists in music, poetry, dance, and film throughout the summer. This Friday, Chris Cohen performs on the main stage and Andrew Toll, of the music collective and chamber orchestra Wild Up, will wander the grounds for his multisite performance. Also catch a poetry reading, a film, and a dance performance—all packed into just three hours.
6–9 p.m. | 1200 Getty Center Dr., Los Angeles | Free | website
July 16 | Festival
Colorado Street Bridge Party
The Colorado Street Bridge is a quintessential part of the Southern California makeup, with its distinctive arches and impressive resistance to earthquakes. Not to mention it’s made cameos in many films and television episodes. Every year since 1993, Pasadena Heritage hosts a rocking party overlooking the bridge with music, foods like shaved ice and funnel cake, kids’ activities, and more. Car lovers will also enjoy a vintage car show surrounded by drum circles and Americana.
6–11:30 p.m. | Defenders Park, Corner of Orange Grove and Colorado Blvd., Pasadena | From $18 | website
Palm Desert is often overlooked for its more popular and busier sibling, Palm Springs. But it’s worth venturing the extra few miles to a quieter and sparser landscape where cacti abound. Stay at Omni Rancho Las Palmas and take in the expansive skies and picture-perfect mountain backgrounds. Eat at Mastro’s Steakhouse and feel like a celebrity munching on premium grade steak; accompany it with a gin and tonic. Finish off with a dip in the pool (or a visit to the spa) to beat the 110-degree heat.
Now open | Restaurant
Here’s Looking at You
Koreatown is excited to welcome Here’s Looking at You, a restaurant opening this week from Chef Jonathan Whitener and manager Lien Ta, both formerly of Animal. This is an Asian-Latin fusion restaurant, which makes sense given the chef’s lineage: Whitener is a Mexican American raised in Little Saigon in Orange County. Expect to eat beef tartare or a lemon yuzu tart while listening to Otis Redding.
3901 W. 6th St., Los Angeles | website
Eva Glettner is a writer and a native Angeleno. She loves art, travel, coffee, and skateboarding.